With the overall ageing of the population, and the continuous problems of short staffing in the health care industry, there is a growing need for qualified patient care personnel across the nation to assist the infirm and elderly with custodial care and rehabilitation services. Patient Care Technicians are usually trained on the job, which allows for numerous inconsistencies and improper health care practices. Properly trained and certified technicians will greatly assist the ailing industry with adequate, competent nursing assisting staff. PCT's are multi-skilled individuals who provide basic patient care services under the supervision of qualified physicians, nurses and other medical professionals. PCT's are typically employed in hospitals, nursing homes, physician's offices, clinics, assisted living facilities and in-home health care settings to provide basic nursing care services to infants, children and adults. Self-employment prospects are high in this vocation, especially for home health care aides, for the elderly, convalescent and disabled persons needing personalized attention at their residences
The Patient Care Technician programme runs for a 9 month period, and consists of 11 modules, with a total of 760 contact hours, which would generate 64 credits. Students will be trained to perform clinical tasks such as: phlebotomy, electrocardiograms (ECG's), completing catheterizations, recording vital signs, and patient treatments. Students will receive instruction in anatomy and physiology, understanding body functions, and related illnesses. They will also have a thorough understanding of medical terminology to aid in the collection and documentation of patient data. Emphasis is placed on the technical skills necessary to perform personal care to complex patients, implementation of selected portions of care plans, including respiratory services, rehabilitation services, under the supervision of registered nurses and qualified physicians. Technicians are trained to escort patients to and from examination or operating rooms, and to observe vital signs and the patient's mental, physical and emotional conditions, and report any changes to the nursing and medical staff.